Posted by Shaka Zulu, Last modified by Shaka Zulu on 07 June 2016 10:06 AM
SPAM filters: A Checklist
‘SPAM’ filters are learning every day what’s considered ‘spammy’. To avoid sending emails that could be considered SPAM here are a few Do’s and Don’ts to avoid getting your emails caught up in the ‘SPAM’ folder where no-one may see it!
Remember, not one action (or actions) from the list below is going to get your email directly through to the inbox or into the ‘SPAM’ folder. ‘SPAM’ Filters score your email based on what you have done or haven’t done in your email. The tips below are tips in order to ensure your ‘SPAM’ level is as low as possible” so you can avoid the dreaded ‘SPAM’ folder.
- Do send a text version of your email campaign along with the HTML version. This is set at a template level and the text area of your campaign. Remember NOT to simply copy and paste the HTML version. SPAM filters will pick up on this as Spammers can never be bothered adding a text component to their emails.
- Do make sure you avoid sending from and email address that isn’t seen as a ‘faked’ email address or from a free account (i.e. Gmail or Hotmail).
- Do make sure the HTML email is coded correctly. Make sure you haven’t copied any content directly from Word into the HTML leaving Word tags in the email. So make sure you use Notepad or type the content directly into your campaign.
- Do make sure ‘spammy’ words are not included in your subject line.
- Do check the spam level using the ‘Spam Checker’ before sending your email.
- Do encourage your subscribers to add you to their email address book. Simply by adding the following text. “Make sure emails from Your-Business-Name get through to your inbox immediately. Add us as a safe sender in your email inbox settings”.
- Do create test Hotmail, Gmail, and Yahoo email accounts to send your campaigns to.
- Do personalise your email using wildcards.
- Don’t under ANY circumstances use CAPITAL LETTERS in your subject line.
- Don’t use ‘spammy’ words and phrases like free, act now, insurance, limited time, coupons, click now, click here, open immediately etc.
- Don’t address the email with the salutation ‘Dear’
- Don’t copy your content directly from Microsoft Word as it will add additional <tags> that will be picked up by the spam filters.
- Don’t (or avoid) colouring your fonts and links bright red or green
- We check our sending engine logs consistently to ensure that we are not registered on any SPAM blacklists.
- Our large volume clients are running from their own IP Addresses
- We can assist you to update your DNS records with our sending engine IP address. Some spam filters complete a ‘reverse lookup’ to check that both IP addresses match.
- Zulu eDM automatically adds the recipient into the “To:” field of the email for you which helps in preventing your emails appearing as SPAM.
Other Handy Tools
- SPAM ASSASSIN – http://spamassassin.apache.org/tests_3_3_x.html. This is a sample of the criteria for SPAM emails from Spam Assassin. A few interesting ones are:
- Talks about Oprah with exclamation!
- Something is emphatically guaranteed
- Weird repeated double-quotation marks
- Domain name has a .Biz in it
- Contains "Prestigious, non-accredited universities"
- Coded with FrontPage